Upward Mobility

FRESNO REGION: Identified in 2003 as a high priority industry for job and wealth creation by the Regional Jobs Initiative (RJI), the San Joaquin Valley Manufacturing Alliance built upon the the lessons learned by that pioneering effort. While led by stewards, the RJI was designed to focus on economic development as if industry was the customer of other sectors. The industry clusters acted more like a trade association, essential voices, but looking through a narrow lens. The SJVMA emerged through the integration of two efforts—The Partnership for the San Joaquin Valley’s Regional Industry Cluster Initiative and the California Community Colleges Doing What Matters for Jobs & the Economy initiative. The Fresno Business Council blended the two efforts building upon a strategy it led with cross sector partners to assist State Center Community College pass a bond and invest the resources optimally.